Day: December 27, 2019

Have a Tesla over-the-air update disaster? Try these reboots.

Have a Tesla over-the-air update disaster? Try these reboots.

Christmas came early for Tesla owners with a “holiday” update that added new features and tools to the software system controlling the electric vehicles. 

But with new features like more voice commands, TRAX music-making, Twitch video streaming, Camp Mode, and new games like Stardew Valley and backgammon comes the inevitable errant Tesla whose computer just won’t update.  

Tesla with its screen-based driving system is known for its quick and painless over-the-air updates. It’s similar to downloading and installing a new operating system on a smartphone. While connected to your WiFi, the car downloads and updates to a new version in about 30 minutes, bringing a slew of new features and changes to the driving experience. But sometimes things get sticky.  Read more…

More about Tesla, Tech, and Transportation

Revenue train kept rolling all year long for Salesforce

Salesforce turned 20 this year, and the most successful pure enterprise SaaS company ever showed no signs of slowing down. Consider that the company finished the year on an $18 billion run rate, rushing toward its 2022 revenue goal of $20 billion. Oh, and it also spent a tidy $15.7 billion to buy Tableau this year in the most high-profile and expensive acquisition it’s ever made.

Co-founder, chairman and CEO Marc Benioff published a book called Trailblazer about running a socially responsible company, and made the rounds promoting it. In fact, he even stopped by TechCrunch Disrupt in San Francisco in September, telling the audience that capitalism as we know it is dead. Still, the company announced it was building two more towers in Sydney and Dublin.

It also promoted Bret Taylor just last week, who could be in line as heir apparent to Benioff and co-CEO Keith Block whenever they decide to retire. The company closed the year with a bang with a $4.5 billion quarter. Salesforce, for the most part, has somehow been able to balance Benioff’s vision of responsible capitalism while building a company makes money in bunches, one that continues to grow and flourish, and that’s showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

All aboard the gravy train

The company just keeps churning out good quarters. Here’s what this year looked like:

How to Create Facebook Video Ads in Minutes: Tips For Beginners

Facebook video ads are an essential part of any business’ social media toolkit. According to Wyzowl, people recall just 20% of the information they read compared to 80% when info is presented in more visual formats. This largely explains the rise of self-directed learning on Youtube.

We’re at an age where every marketer knows videos are important. But not every marketer knows yet that videos are surprisingly easy to make. You might think good video content requires professional gear, complex software, and a big budget — but that’s not the case.

It’s true that making a video ad used to mean hiring a scriptwriter, director, actors, and camera crew — then paying for professional editing on top of that. But advances in technology have changed all that. There are now very simple and inexpensive ways you can do that.

Here how to create Facebook video ads in minutes:

how to create facebook video ads

Take advantage of stock footage and audio

One of the simplest ways to get great content is to use what others have already created. Using stock video footage allows you to include imagery in your video that would be difficult to film yourself.

Say you want a sweeping aerial shot of mountains in your video. Getting that shot yourself would be very difficult and expensive. But if someone else has already filmed it and made it available as stock footage, you can pay a small fee and use it in your own video ad. Most stock video libraries will allow you to search by keywords to quickly find what you’re after.

You might be surprised to know that it’s not the only deadline and budget-driven marketers who use stock media. Even major film studios use stock footage to save time and money.

You can blend stock footage with content you create yourself or even make your entire video from stock by editing various scenes together.

The same goes for stock audio and music. Getting the right to commercially-released music is very expensive and so is hiring a composer. But with stock music, you can add great background music to your video without paying too much.

Use ready-made templates

If you want to create videos very quickly, you can also try using a Facebook video ad template. Templates are helpful because they give you a general outline to fit your content into. These will usually come pre-loaded with stock video and audio, which you can keep or replace, as well as spaces to add your own text.

For example, you could use this travel ad template or this ready-made cafe ad and replace the stock footage provided with original content you’ve shot for your business.

You could also try a dedicated Facebook video ad maker. This will provide you with a simple drag-and-drop interface – just choose stock video and audio that work for your business then add your own text.

Edit your video online

If you are going to use your own video content, it’s helpful to have some basic editing tools on hand. Access to a good editor is helpful because it means you don’t need to nail everything in one take. You can quickly trim down scenes to get the timing right and edit together multiple takes.

There’s plenty of complex and expensive editing software out there but all you need for simple Facebook video ads is a free online editor. With a good editor, you can put together a video and send it straight to your account from the editor.

It may take a little practice, but it’s pretty easy to get the basic editing techniques for making your video content look great.

How to Create Facebook Video Ads That Work

create facebook video ads

It’s one thing to put a video together but another to create effective content. Here are some tips on how to create Facebook video ads that work:

  1. Ensure your videos are exported in the right file type and size to play easily on Facebook. Check out Facebook’s guidelines for video ads, and always ensure your content is optimized for mobile devices as that’s probably where it will be seen.
  2. Keep your videos short – 15-60 seconds is a good general guide. It’s hard enough to grab people’s attention on social media; don’t push your luck once you do.
  3. Mention your brand early – ideally in the first 3 seconds – and make sure your logo or company name also appears on the screen visually, not just in the audio. More than 85% of Facebook users watch videos without sound!
  4. Speaking of soundless videos, ensure your ad has subtitles and text so people can engage with it even if they don’t turn on the sound. This is also a reason to include good music – if people do turn the sound on, they should be rewarded!
  5. Your videos shouldn’t look sloppy but you also don’t want something overly polished. People aren’t on social media looking for slick ads. So go for good, authentic content that adds value to people’s scrolling experience and just happens to also boost your brand.

Get your video in front of the right people

Don’t forget to target your ad when it’s time to share it on Facebook. You can customize the audience for your ad according to location, age, gender, languages, interests, behaviors, and even connections.

Follow those guidelines and start putting video ads together and you’ll start to see great results. Whether you’re starting off with simple templates or editing a mini-masterpiece, online videos should be a key part of your online promotional strategy.

See Also: 8 Reasons Why You Should Be Using Facebook Advertising

The post How to Create Facebook Video Ads in Minutes: Tips For Beginners appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Here’s Chris Evans’ dog in a white sweater. You are welcome.

Here's Chris Evans' dog in a white sweater. You are welcome.

What could possibly be better than Chris Evans in the lush, luxe, off-white cable-knit sweater that broke the internet?

The matching version worn by his dog.

The sweater heard round the world — or, specifically, by someone sitting next to Mashable’s Nicole Gallucci at a screening of Knives Out during a moment of pure and overwhelming thirst, captured in a viral tweet — inspired waves of fans wearing similar items to screenings. 

Evans’ Knives Out character Ransom Drysdale may have been less than wholesome, but in our divided era, at least everyone can agree that Chris Evans wore the shit out of that knit. Read more…

More about Dogs, Chris Evans, Sweater, Knives Out, and Entertainment

Wikimedia Foundation expresses deep concerns about India’s proposed intermediary liability rules

Wikimedia Foundation, the nonprofit group that operates Wikipedia and a number of other projects, has urged the Indian government to rethink the proposed changes to the nation’s intermediary liability rules that would affect swathes of companies and the way more than half a billion people access information online.

The organization has also urged the Indian government to make public the latest proposed changes to the intermediary rules so that all stakeholders have a chance to participate in a “robust and informed debate about how the internet should be governed in India.”

India proposed changes to intermediary rules (PDF) in late December last year and it is expected to approve it in the coming months. Under the proposal, the Indian Ministry of Electronics and IT requires “intermediary” apps — which as per its definition, includes any service with more than 5 million users — to set up a local office and have a senior executive in the nation who can be held responsible for any legal issues.

Amanda Keton, general counsel of Wikimedia Foundation, said on Thursday that India’s proposed changes to the intermediary rules may have serious impact on Wikipedia’s business — as it operates an open editing model that relies on users to contribute new articles and make changes to existing articles on Wikipedia — as well as those of other organizations.

The rules may also create a “significant financial burden” for nonprofit technology organizations and impede free expression rights for internet users in India, she said. Wikimedia Foundation conveyed its concerns to Ravi Shankar Prasad, the Minister of Electronics and IT in India. The company also published the letter on its blog for the world to see.

India’s latest changes to intermediary rules, which have been drafted to make the internet a safer experience for local residents, also require intermediaries to deploy automated tools “for proactively identifying and removing or disabling public access to unlawful information or content.”

The proposed changes have raised concerns for many. In a joint letter (PDF) earlier this year, Mozilla, Microsoft’s GitHub and Wikimedia had cautioned the Indian government that requiring intermediaries to proactively purge their platforms of unlawful content “would upend the careful balance set out in the existing law which places liability on the bad actors who engage in illegal activities, and only holds companies accountable when they know of such acts.”

The groups also cautioned that drafted measures “would significantly expand surveillance requirements on internet services.” Several trade bodies in India, that represent a number of major firms including Google and Facebook, have also suggested major changes to the proposal.

In the open letter published today, Wikimedia’s Keton reiterated several of those concerns, adding that “neither participants in the consultation nor the public have seen a new draft of these rules since [last year].” She also requested the government to redefine, how it has in another recently proposed set of rules, the way it classifies an entity as an intermediary as the current version seems to have far-reaching scope.

India is the fifth largest market for Wikipedia — more than 771 million users from the country visited the online encyclopaedia last month. Wikimedia has run several programs in India to invite people to expand the online encyclopaedia in Indic languages.

Keton urged the government to rethink the requirement to bring “traceability” on online communication, as doing so would interfere with the ability of Wikipedia contributors to freely participate in the project. (On the point of traceability, WhatsApp has said complying to such requirement would compromise encryption for every user.)